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Williston School Board will continue teacher negotiations with Williston Education Association, but future progress unclear.

In a 5-2 vote, the Williston Basin School District Board motioned to continue negotiations with...
In a 5-2 vote, the Williston Basin School District Board motioned to continue negotiations with the Williston Education Association.(kfyr)
Updated: Jun. 10, 2021 at 7:11 PM CDT
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WILLISTON, N.D. (KFYR) - In a 5-2 vote, the Williston Basin School District Board motioned to continue negotiations with the Williston Education Association. Despite this, tensions remain high as both sides look to stand firm on their beliefs.

The vote showed signs that both the School Board and the association want to come to an agreement, but the only way that happens is if someone moves on reduction-in-force procedure and extracurricular pay. That’s the looming question.

Before the vote, the board allowed association lead negotiator Matt Liebel time to speak in front of the whole board, pleading to continue talks and asking why the board seems to be against something they supported back during the election.

“How does having RIF in the negotiated agreement hurt the district when five of seven board members say in their pre-election questionnaire that they want some form of agreed-upon RIF procedure in November, what has changed since then?” Liebel asked.

John Kasmer made a motion to further negotiations. Some board members had a chance to speak on why it’s important for both sides to continue talking, but Kyle Renner and Chris Jundt - who are on the negotiation team - argued there is little point in meeting as both sides refuse to move on RIF and Extracurriculars.

“I see nothing more productive happening meeting again and talking about it anymore,” Renner said.

As the meeting went into executive session, Liebel says he hopes the board will listen to its constituents when meeting again.

Both sides are supposed to meet next Tuesday at 6 p.m. The biggest thing to look out for is what the board will bring to the table since their last package deal was a hard no from the association.

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